Emma Byrne Republic of Ireland

Republic of Ireland WNT set sights on UEFA Women’s EURO 2017 qualification

The Republic of Ireland Women’s team face into a crucial UEFA Women’s EURO 2017 qualifier against Spain on Tuesday evening (5pm Irish time) with the race for qualification hotting up as Group 2 enters the final stretch.

The Girls in Green go into the game on the back of a 5-0 win away to Montenegro last Thursday with the Spaniards coming away from Portugal with a 4-1 win on Friday night. Maximum points from the two games was the aim for the team and with the job half done following Thursday’s win, the focus has shifted to Tuesday’s clash with Spain.

Ireland captain Emma Byrne spoke to FAI TV where she outlined that qualification remains the team’s main focus. “Qualification has been our aim from the very start. The result against Finland was a bit of a knock back and a blow for us because we were expecting to beat them. It doesn’t hinder us in any way because we are still in with a great chance of qualifying. Spain are number one seeds and a really good team, but there is no reason why, that if we perform well that we can’t go out and beat them.“

Group leaders Spain have a perfect record of five wins from five in Group 2, scoring 18 goals in the process. A managerial change in the summer had seen a resurgence from the Spainish, however, having already faced them in Dublin, Byrne is quietly confident heading into the game. “There is a good feeling in our camp. Confidence has grown, especially since the win in Montenegro so it’s a good time for us to play Spain, in Spain, because I think we play better away from home as well,” Byrne, who made her 125th international appearance on Thursday added.

Head Coach Sue Ronan is without full-back Sophie Perry for the game due to work commitments, while Shelbourne goalkeeper Niamh Reid-Burke has been ruled out as she continues her rehabilitation from an ankle injury.

The action gets underway in Madrid at 5pm Irish Time on Tuesday and live updates of the game will be provided on www.fai.ie as well as the Official FAIreland Facebook, Instagram & Twitter accounts before, during and after the game.

Republic of Ireland Women’s National Team Squad to face Spain:

Goalkeepers:

Emma Byrne (Arsenal Ladies),
Grace Moloney (Reading Women)

Defenders:

Louise Quinn (Eskilstuna United),
Jessica Gleeson (Wexford Youths WFC),
Niamh Fahey (Chelsea Ladies),
Meabh De Burca (Galway WFC)
Aine O’Gorman (UCD Waves)

Midfielders:

Karen Duggan (UCD Waves),
Denise O’Sullivan (Houston Dash),
Diane Caldwell (Kóln),
Ruesha Littlejohn (Glasgow City),
Julie-Ann Russell (UCD Waves),
Katie McCabe (Arsenal Ladies),
Emma Hansberry (Wexford Youths wfc),
Jetta Berrill (UCD Waves)

Forwards:

Stephanie Roche (Sunderland Ladies),
Fiona O’Sullivan (California Storm),
Clare Shine (Glasgow City)

FAI press release.

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